More than Half of English Clubs Facing Kit Delays

The BBC have reported that only 44 out of 92 Premier League and EFL clubs have both their home and away shirts available to buy just a few weeks ahead of the 22-23 season, with supply chain problems in Asia the main cause. Some clubs will likely start the season before their new shirts go on sale.

English Clubs Face Kit Delays

Although there are still quite a few new kit releases still to come, by this stage of the summer the majority of 22-23 shirts have already been released, some earlier than usual thanks to the early start of the 22-23 season. With the first ever winter World Cup disrupting the football calendar, this year the Premier League starts on August 5th, the Championship on July 29th and League One and League Two on July 30th.

Despite many launches going ahead, there are a lot of kits which are not yet available to buy. Out of the 92 clubs in the top four leagues:

  • 44 teams have both kits available for sale on their website
  • 22 teams have only their home kit available
  • 7 teams have only their away kit available
  • 19 teams have neither kit available

Although bigger clubs tend to sell more shirts, it is the smaller clubs who may feel the financial impact of these delays the most. Elite clubs usually receive a fixed rate from the kit manufacturer and about 7% commission on each unit sold.

Leeds and Crystal Palace are among the clubs affected, with neither having their home or away shirts available to buy.Closed Stores, "Crashing Stocks", Postponed Launches - How The Coronavirus Pandemic Affects Adidas, Puma & Nike

As we have seen with delays of various boots over the last couple of years, COVID plays no small part in the problem, with factory closures in Asia and other pandemic-related difficulties the main reason for the majority of delays. Slowed production due to restrictions, as well as a shortage of container ships and disruption at ports have also contributed to the backlog.

The kits will eventually arrive at their destinations and fans will still be able to get heir hands on them, even if it is later than they had hoped. One possible outcome, however, could be a decrease in the number of kit sales for these clubs, due to the shortened window that fans have to buy them.

Has your club been hit by kit delays? Let us know in the comments.